A sesshin — 接心 — pronounced ‘sess-sheen’ (in Japanese) means “to touch the heart-mind.” It’s an intensive period of one-pointed meditation — zazen (within Zen) — or any spiritual practice, where alternatives to the head-brain operating solo are introduced into life, lifestyle and life-cycle. This incorporates a strong daily routine with an intention to calibrate, coordinate, organize, align and ignite every aspect of life. Focus and concentration accompany this strong discipline to bypass the more common influences of collective noise; social expectations; familial patterns, and personal habits that have built up over years, which — once established — control your attitudes, opinions, perceptions and perspectives leading to big decisions. A sesshin gives you the opportunity to separate from these psycho-emotional relations that govern you.
There’s a great joy in the development of your own sesshin routine — this is the joy of purpose — the joy of progress — the joy of success.
Take all the events that commonly occur during the various ways of your days; look at each one of these as an influence on your life; then realize these influences layer and stack to build insurmountable structures within which you ultimately have little maneuverability. These are the aspects of your life which ingrain and rule you when you’re not conscious and intentional. They become obnoxious, unwanted, and beyond your control.
This is where you want to expand your awareness of how all your information, your intelligence and wisdom are processed. Practicing sesshin, incorporates the heart-brain and the gut-brain, you add their perspectives of circulation — giving and receiving with the heart, and nourishing connections with the gut. From these additional perspectives, you calibrate, coordinate, organize, align and ignite unimaginable opportunities that would never appear to your head-brain.
Our prayer is that you’re consistent with your sesshins, and love the opportunity to touch your power.
Guru Singh is a world-renowned yoga instructor, author, musician, and family man. Guru Singh works with the Dalai Lama, teaches with Tony Robbins, and has recorded an album with Grammy® Award-winning artist Seal. He can also be found on Facebook and Twitter.
Check out Guru Singh’s most recent book: Buried Treasures: The Journey From Where You Are to Who You Are.
Image courtesy of Joshua Newton.